Lake Atitlan, Panajachel, Guatemala

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Hola from Chile and Peru

My youngest son and I are traveling in South America this summer. We are one month into our trip, the first week spent in Coquimbo/La Serena, Chile to see the eclipse. This eclipse had a very narrow view for totality. You basically had to go to South America to experience it. Not that either of us are eclipse chasers, but as long as we had plans to go why not arrange things to see that?

We saw it from the beach, which was incredible and this photo doesn't do it justice. They never do. You've got to have some kind of special camera to really photograph totality. But with this shot we can appreciate how dark it is, like the sun has set, yet it's still quite far above the horizon. 

We only stayed in this area for a week, as it was quite expensive. Every day I walked for hours on the beach. It was cold, since it's winter now in Chile, but not too bad in the afternoon with the sun shining. I loved those beach walks, especially the pelicans! I admire how they're so relaxed and companionable, but when it's time to eat they go after it with a vengeance, dive-bombing straight into the water. I never tired of watching them.
We bussed from La Serena north to the Chile/Peru border, stopping here and there along the way. It took about a week until we finally crossed the border and headed to Irequipa, Peru, where we decided to stay for a month.

I love it in Arequipa. The weather is fantastic, sunny and in the low to mid-seventies every day. The prices for lodging and food are quite reasonable, even cheap, especially compared to Chile. I've checked out a few places for long-term rentals for maybe next year when I'd like to come back and stay for six months. I could totally live here for $500 to $800 a month, including food and incidentals. So I just might do that.

Here's my son buying two hand-knit alpaca sweaters for just $10 each. Both he and the vendor were very happy with their transaction. He's wearing one of them, isn't it beautiful? And so soft! I haven't found one yet, but I'm keeping my eyes open. Today I bought a hat. Everyone here wears hats because of the intensity of the sun.

I'm posting photos regularly on my Instagram @travelingnonny if you want to see more of my travels through Chile and Peru!